Biden’s strategy from here

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Joe Biden at his campaign kick-off rally. By Michael Stokes. Wikipedia.

Never interfere with an enemy while he’s in the process of destroying himself.

2. Don’t get distracted by the latest shiny object. As human beings, we love novelty. We want to do the fun, new things rather than pay attention to the mundane tasks we are so familiar with. This psychological state is a critical problem in political campaigns, and it is one Democrats are especially guilty of. Consider Will Rogers’s statement:

I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat.

The latest shiny object is winning states that are becoming more competitive than they once were. G. Elliott Morris wrote a post today pointing out that a number of sunbelt states had become more competitive of late. Part of the evidence for his argument is an analysis of election simulations that point to Texas as being a potential “tipping state,” putting the winner over the top to get the number of electoral votes he needs to win the general election. The problem is that if Texas is the tipping state, that means Trump has won. In other words, simply because of the fact that a state tips the election to one candidate or another does not make that state a swing state.

Money is the mother’s milk of politics.

Unlike the Clinton and Obama campaigns, Biden finds himself at a major financial disadvantage compared to Trump. This will become a major problem in the fall if Biden can’t turn it around. The good news is that Democrats are highly motivated and have shown that they will give generously. Biden just needs to start giving Democrats the means and the opportunity to contribute. If he sets up such a framework, any financial advantage Trump has will be short-lived.

The most important thing a campaign needs is discipline.

Obama was known for his discipline, and his campaigns reflected that characteristic of his. Trump, ironically, has amazing message discipline, even if he is a trainwreck of a candidate in every other way. Biden, unfortunately, is not so strong on this front. He needs to get disciplined, and fast, and focus on these essential strategic tasks if he is to be competitive in the fall.

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Mike is an Assistant Professor of Management for Legal and Ethical Studies at Oakland U. Mike combines his scholarship with practical experience in politics.

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